updated 11/9/2010 7:16:55 PM ET 2010-11-10T00:16:55

HAWTHORNE, N.Y., Nov. 9, 2010 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- SmartPros Ltd. (Nasdaq:SPRO), a leader in the field of accredited professional education and corporate training, today announced its third quarter financial results for the three and nine months ended September 30, 2010. A conference call to discuss earnings is scheduled for Wednesday, November 10, at 8:30 AM Eastern time.

For the three months ended September 30, 2010, and 2009:

  • Net revenues decreased to $3.9 million from $4.4 million
  • Operating loss of $117,000, compared to a loss of $261,000
  • EBITDA (earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortization) was $167,000,compared to $19,000
  • Net loss of $109,000, or $.02 per share, compared to a net loss of $181,000, or $0.04 per share

For the nine months ended September 30, 2010, and 2009:

  • Net revenues decreased to $12.6 million from $13.4 million
  • Operating loss of $765,000, compared to operating income of $12,000
  • EBITDA was $29,000, compared to $789,000
  • Net loss of $526,000, or $.11 per share, compared to net income of $66,000, or $0.01 per share

As of September 30, 2010, the Company had approximately $5.9 million in cash and cash equivalents, $1.6 million in accounts receivable, $5.4 million in deferred revenue, stockholders' equity of $12 million, no debt, and a note receivable of $775,000 that was repaid in full on October 13, 2010.

"While revenues were down in the third quarter, we managed expenses accordingly and actually reduced our operating loss by 55 percent, when compared to last year," said Allen Greene, SmartPros Chairman and CEO. "We believe the decreased operating loss shows that we remain diligent in keeping pace with the economic climate."

Greene continued: "The economy is still impacting our business, particularly with respect to our custom development projects and live training programs. For instance, Skye Multimedia's business, which is primarily custom development projects, has been affected by client budget cuts and the postponement of projects. We have also seen a reduction in our live seminar businesses, where the average number of participants at events has decreased. That translates to event expenses remaining the same with less revenue and profit margin per event. Nevertheless, SmartPros is moving into what has historically been our best quarter, but we still face an uncertain economic environment."

The Company's Board of Directors today also authorized a new $750,000 share buy-back program for the coming year. The timing and exact number of shares purchased will be determined at the Company's discretion and will depend on market conditions. All repurchases will be in the open market or in private transactions and will be funded from existing cash. The share buy-back program will begin immediately and will be completed or cancelled within 12 months.

In addition, the Board announced the issuance of SmartPros' fourth consecutive quarterly dividend of $.01 per common share payable on December 31, 2010, to shareholders of record as of December 15, 2010.

"The Board felt that with our strong cash position and our positive EBITDA performance that a dividend was appropriate at this time," said Greene.

"We also want to bring to your attention that our note receivable of approximately $775,000 owing at the end of September was repaid, including interest and all fees, on October 13," said Greene. "As part of that transaction we retained a right of first refusal to purchase the borrowers' assets for 10 years. Details of the transaction are available by reviewing our various SEC filings." 

SmartPros will host a teleconference tomorrow morning, Wednesday, November 10, beginning at 8:30 AM Eastern, and invites all interested parties to join management in a discussion regarding the Company's financial results, corporate progress and other meaningful developments. The conference call can be accessed via telephone by dialing toll free 1-877-941-1466.

About SmartPros

Founded in 1981, SmartPros Ltd. is an industry leader in the field of accredited professional education and corporate training. Its products and services are primarily focused in the accredited professional areas of corporate accounting, financial management, public accounting, governmental and not-for-profit accounting, financial services, banking, engineering, legal, ethics and compliance, and information technology. SmartPros is a leading provider of professional education products to Fortune 500 companies, as well as the major firms and associations in each of its professional markets. SmartPros provides education and content publishing and development services in a variety of media including Web, CD-ROM, video and live seminars and events. Our subscription libraries feature hundreds of course titles and 2,300+ hours of accredited education. SmartPros' proprietary Professional Education Center (PEC) Learning Management System (LMS) offers enterprise distribution and administration of education content and information. In addition, SmartPros produces a popular news and information portal for accounting and finance professionals serving more than one million ads and distributing more than 200,000 subscriber email newsletters each month. SmartPros' network of Web sites averages more than 900,000 monthly visits, serving a user base of more than one million profiled members. Visit: www.smartpros.com

The SmartPros logo is available at http://www.globenewswire.com/newsroom/prs/?pkgid=2586

Safe Harbor Statement

Statements in this press release that are not statements of historical or current fact constitute "forward-looking statements" within the meaning of Section 27A of the Securities Act of 1933 and Section 21E of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934. These forward-looking statements involve risks and uncertainties, including activities, events or developments, that the Company expects, believes or anticipates will or may occur in the future. In addition to statements that explicitly describe these risks and uncertainties, readers are urged to consider statements that contain terms such as "believes," "belief," "expects," "expect," "intends," "intend," "anticipate," "anticipates," "plans," "plan," to be uncertain and forward-looking. The forward-looking statements contained herein are also subject generally to other risks and uncertainties that are described from time to time in the Company's filings with Securities and Exchange Commission. Specifically, results reported within this press release should not be considered an indication of future performance.

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